He was conspicuous by his absence Sunday morning following the Metro North derailment in The Bronx. Our first thought was he’s in Bermuda golfing.
Mayor Michael Bloomberg was in Bermuda on Sunday when a train derailed in the Bronx, the most recent time that the mayor has been out of town when a major incident in New York City occurred, a person familiar with the matter said.
Mr. Bloomberg, who steps down on Dec. 31 after 12 years at City Hall, was playing golf Sunday at Bermuda’s majestic Mid Ocean golf club, a person who spotted the mayor said. The Metro-North Railroad train derailment — killing four people and injuring more than 60 others — occurred at roughly 7:20 a.m. New York time.
Mr. Bloomberg was golfing in the early morning and did not leave the course until roughly 1 p.m, the person said. Bermuda is one hour ahead of New York time.
If he cared he could have been back to New York within several hours.
A spokesman for Mr. Bloomberg, a 71-year-old billionaire businessman, declined to discuss his whereabouts on Sunday. The mayor did not attend any of the briefings at the scene of the accident Sunday, but he visited with the injured at two hospitals after nightfall.
When asked Sunday night by reporters why he wasn’t at the scene, Mr. Bloomberg replied, “What can I do? I’m not a professional firefighter or a police officer. There’s nothing I can do. What I can do is make sure that the right people from New York City – our police commissioner, our fire commissioner and our emergency management commissioner – are there and that they have all the resources that they want.”
Nothing he can do, says the guy who wants to manage your salt intake and consumption of soft drinks. But a horrible accident on his watch? Pfft. Now, what hole were we on?
“I was briefed a few minutes, probably a half an hour after the train wreck, or the first time that I’d heard about it, and we responded in the ways that I think the city should be proud of our emergency first responders. They did exactly what they are supposed to do.”
He didn’t even bother mentioning it on Twitter until six hours after the fact. Heckuva job, Bloomie!
Thoughts and prayers with those impacted by today's train derailment. If you are looking for a loved one who was onboard, call 311.
— Mike Bloomberg (@MikeBloomberg) December 1, 2013